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Pregnant and Thinking About Adoption - Your Choices, Your Decision

March 03, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 150

A common reaction to an unplanned pregnancy is to think you have only two choices: Raise the child yourself or have an abortion. The other choice and, often, the best choice is adoption.

When you first realize you are pregnant, it's natural to feel pressured to make a decision right away about what to do. There's no reason to rush into a decision you may not be prepared to live with. You have more time to decide than you think.

You have three choices. One of them will be the best decision for you. But to make the right choice for you, you must consider all three choices, not just one or two.

Abortion is a final decision that leaves no room for error. Once it's done, there is no opportunity to reconsider. You may rush into a decision to abort when in fact that may not be the best choice for you.

Some women "just know" that abortion is not for them. Even when pressured by their boyfriend to have an abortion right away, most women feel it in their gut and in their heart that abortion would not be the right decision for them or for their baby. With abortion, nobody wins except the boyfriend. So often, the boyfriend just wants the "problem" to go away - and fast. He has no desire to have a baby in his life. Having a child would interfere with how he spends his days and his nights. Having a child would force him into personal and financial responsibilities he does not want. Having a child would make someone else the focus of your attention instead of him!

To him, abortion is a quick and easy fix and then it's over forever. He has no real concern or understanding about the long-term effects an abortion will have on you -- not to mention the baby!

He may tell you that you will "forget" or that you "can't remember what you never had". Nothing could be further from the truth. The truth is that having an abortion, while it certainly ends the life of your baby, it does not end your thoughts and feelings about your baby.

Women who have had an abortion are sad and often filled with regret their whole lives. It becomes an empty hole in their hearts that never mends. It's an especially painful regret because it was a decision they made. Abortion is not an accident that happens to you that's not your fault. A woman who chooses abortion takes full responsibility for that decision. And, if there is regret, it hurts for a lifetime.

When you consider parenting your child, consider all of your resources carefully. Your time, your energy, your emotional availability, your financial resources and family members willing and able to help you. A young mother needs ample amounts of all these resources.

Time. How do you spend your time? How do you want to spend your time? How many hours a week must you work to provide enough income for yourself and your baby? Are you trying to finish school as well as work? How much time will be left over for you to date and have a social life with your friends -- when you are not working, going to school or caring for the baby? How many hours each day will you actually have to spend with your child if you are working, going to school and making necessary time for yourself?

Energy. Having time to relax and enjoy your friends is critical to your well-being and happiness. Sufficient sleep and relaxation are necessary to rejuvenate yourself for the many tasks you must accomplish each day. Without sufficient rest and play time, you will quickly become over-stressed, cranky and miserable. You may come to resent your many responsibilities. You may even come to resent the time you have to spend caring for and entertaining your child. It may seem selfish to think of your own needs, but if your needs are not met daily, you can't meet your child's needs.

Emotional Availability. Deciding to parent a child is a commitment for a lifetime. And it's a constant commitment. Every minute of every day, mothers who want to be mothers think constantly about their child. Every decision they make is with their child in mind.

Not everyone wants to be a mother. And that's okay. What doesn't work out well is to be a mother and not really want to be a mother. Mother and child are both miserable in that situation.

Perhaps you want to be a mother, but just not now. That's okay too. Take the time now to consider how much "love time" you have to give a child right now. If your focus right now needs to be on taking care of you exclusively, you and your child will both be better served by making a decision that honors and cares for each of you.

Financial Resources. Let's face it. Money matters. While you don't have to be rich to be a good parent and there is usually help available in your community, it's never really enough and doesn't last long. Ideally, you need a reliable source of income, that you earn yourself, sufficient to keep a decent roof over your head, healthy food on the table and clothes for you and your child. And you need money to have fun outings and toys. After all, you don't want to live in poverty and on welfare. And you don't want your child to have to live a life of poverty and lack. Consider what financial resources you have and what kind of life your resources will afford you and your child.

Family Members to Help. Parenting a child can be exhausting. Babies and children depend on you for everything. They need so much and there is so little they can do for themselves. You must do it. And when your energy has run out and you need to rest and rejuvenate, it would be very helpful to have someone to give you a break.

A family member who is willing to help can be a lifesaver. But be careful, people may want to help and may promise you they will help, without realistically assessing their own ability to help. Most people have so many commitments of their own they cannot free up any time to help anyone else -- even though they may want to. Be realistic about the people in your life who have the desire and the ability to help you when you need it. And you will need it.

Everyone wants what is best for themselves - that's human nature. Although some may call it "selfish", it's good to be selfish to protect yourself from things you don't want in your life. Now, you want what is best for you and your baby. Don't let anyone talk you out of what is ultimately your decision and your decision alone.

Adoption can be the answer for everyone affected by the birth of your child. Adoption means everyone gets to live they life they chose uninterrupted. And your child gets to live the life that you choose for her. Because you get to choose the adoptive parents. And because you'll choose them, you'll know you can trust them completely to be good parents -- otherwise, you won't choose them!

You'll know how your baby is doing, how she is growing and how happy she is. You'll know that she has everything she needs. She'll have a loving family with two parents and loving extended family members like grandmothers, aunts and cousins who will be present and active in her life. She'll go to great schools and participate in activities she likes. Dance, cheerleading, Girl Scouts, sports, play a musical instrument. What will she choose? She'll probably have a dog or a cat. She'll likely travel to far off places, go to the beach and the mountains. You can choose parents for her that will give her not only all the love and support she needs daily, but also the kind of life you dream of for her.

Taking time to consider all three of your choices will guide you to make the right choice for you.

Find out more about all of your options. http://PregnantAndThinkingAboutAdoption.com is a resource designed especially for you.

I send you love and best wishes as you face probably the most difficult decision of your life. If you want to talk, you can call me. My number is 1-800-887-7723.

I've been helping young women make life-changing decisions about an unplanned pregnancy for over 21 years. My law practice is devoted exclusively to adoptions. I became a mother myself because of the courageous decision of a beautiful young woman just like you whom I honor and will be grateful to forever.

Solid information and help, if you need it, is always available you at http://PregnantAndThinkingAboutAdoption.com.

Remember, you are here on this earth to Live, Love and Laugh Often! Let me know how I can help you.

Linda Barnby

Source: EzineArticles
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